George had an epiphany about food this year. A Master of Arts of Liberal Studies student at UNCG, he has been writing about his slow food journey since this summer on his blog, Dirty Greek.org. George and I, along with about a dozen other listmembers, were in Charlie Headington and Steve Tate’s “Slow Food in a Fast Food Nation” class this semester. I think that I can speak for all of us that we are very sad that the class is over, but we are all immensely richer for the experience.
The following is George’s post about his first Slow Food Thanksgiving. He also writes about liberal politics and environmentalism on his blog, if you would like to check it out. The original post is here.
Well, Thanksgiving went REALLY well. I ended up cooking the free range turkeys myself, which I didn’t know I was going to have to do (I’ve never done it before), but they came out great! Here are the photos.
There were about 40 people at my family’s Thanksgiving meal this year. I have a HUGE family between my dad’s family and my mom’s family, and we usually combine them at my parents’ house for Thanksgiving. I decided, after learning so much about the slow food movement and organic and local food, that I wanted to do a really healthy, environmentally sound meal this year. Slow food is all about food and family, right? So what’s a better way to celebrate food and family than Thanksgiving?
We got two Ebelry Poultry free range, organic turkeys from Earth Fare, and most of the vegetables, fruits, eggs, and even cheese and butter from the Farmers Markets in Winston Salem and Asheville. It was so cool that my mom got so into it! Even without much prodding from me, she called to reserve the turkeys without my even asking her to, and she and a few of my aunts and my grandmother spent several hours at the farmers market! She pulled out all the stops; I couldn’t believe it when I got into town and she showed me the butter and farm cheese!
I cooked for basically 24 hours from Wednesday to Thanksgiving day, if you don’t include the 5 or 6 hours of sleep I had in between… and the breaks I took to enjoy some beer and whiskey with my brother and cousin. I cooked two turkeys, curry pumpkin soup (freakin’ yum), two pumpkin pies, an apple pie, and a squash casserole. My dad and my brother John helped me clean the turkeys, and john actually made the pumpkin pie filling once I had the pumpkins cooked and the meat scraped out.
Aside from a few ribs from my uncle about the meal being a “Hippy Thanksgiving” and another cousin joking about me “burning my bra,” everyone loved the meal. Other family members got into the thing, even though I didn’t want anyone to think that what they brought had to be any different than usual. One cousin’s new wife, Brandee, brought an organic broccoli casserole. One of my aunts made an organic Greek salad. I’m sure I’m forgetting a few details, but the really great thing is that everyone got into the spirit, we had some good food and family time, and I planted some seeds in their heads about sustainable food. My mom especially surprised me. The whole thing was great.